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Duplicating Task Sequences in MDT 2013 Lite Touch

Jan 11 2015

Duplicating, or copying task sequences within the same deployment share in MDT 2013 Lite Touch works is quite different compared with doing the same with ConfigMgr 2012 (SCCM 2012). When you copy a task sequence in ConfigMgr, you get a true duplicate. When you copy a task sequence in MDT 2013 Lite Touch within the same deployment share, using the Deployment Workbench, you only get a link to the original task sequence.

This means of you if you change the copied task sequence, you will also change the source task sequence.

Modifying the copied task sequence in the test folder, like removing the Silverlight app, will also remove Silverlight from the source task sequence.


Duplicating a Task Sequence

So how can you create a duplicate of a task sequence?  You have two options:

  1. Create a new task sequence in the Deployment Workbench, go the control folder, and copy the content of the task sequence folder you want to copy in to the new task sequence folder. Example: You have an old task sequence with an ID of REFW81X64-001, and you have created a new task sequence with an ID of REFW81X64-002. To have REFW81X64-002 being a duplicate of REFW81X64-001, simply copy the content of the REFW81X64-001 folder to REFW81X64-002.
  2. User PowerShell, the following PowerShell code will duplicate a task sequence.
Add-PSSnapIn Microsoft.BDD.PSSnapIn
New-PSDrive -Name "MDT" -PSProvider MDTProvider -Root "E:\MDTBuildLab"

# Duplicating the REFW81X64-002 task sequence into a new a task sequence with with ID REFW81X64-003
# Note: Grave accent (backtick) is used on th next line to wrap the line for readibility.
Import-MDTTaskSequence -Template client.xml -name 'Windows 8.1 Copy' -ID REFW81X64-003 -OperatingSystemPath `
    'MDT:\Operating Systems\Windows 8.1\Windows 8.1 Enterprise x64' -Path 'MDT:\Task Sequences\Windows 8.1' -Version 1.0
Copy-Item -Path E:\MDTBuildLab\Control\REFW81X64-002\ts.xml -Destination 'E:\MDTBuildLab\Control\REFW81X64-003' -Force


The manual option, copying a task sequence via the file system


Copying Task Sequences between deployment shares

The behavior when copying items within a deployment share is different from when copy between deployment shares. When you copy between deployment shares, you get a true copy

Good friend and Microsoft MVP Mikael Nystrom recently posted a nice article on copying items between deployment shares.

Note: Copying between deployment share will fail if an object with the same name already exist, but if you copy a task sequence with a different name, but the same task sequence ID, deployment workbench will simply replace the existing task sequence without any questions.

Copying task sequences between deployment shares with the same name is prevented, copying with the same Task Sequence ID is not…

Happy deployment, and thanks for reading!
/ The Deployment Research team

Ami Casto

Johan Arwidmark

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